THE KOPKE FAMILY

Origin of the name KOPKE.

German name books (e.g. Bahlow) state this family name to originate from JACOB, a traditional Jewish first name. It became Köpke (and many further versions as given below) by two major developments, a) cut-off of the first syllable and b) add-on of a diminutive form: ergo = Ja-cob-k(l)e. The name has no relation to the German word "Kopf" (meaning head)

This thesis is described in a very detailed manner by Dr. R. Köpke in his book "Kleine Schriften", Berlin 1872, published by E.S. Mittler und Sohn, on pages 24 ff. Below follows an ad hoc translation of part of its page 32: (translation/citation) "...There is documentary evidence for the following variations from the late 13th to the early 16th century: Cobbe, Kobbe, Coppe, Coppen, Koppe, Cöppe, Copeko, Copekin, Koppekin, Copkin, Kopkin, Cöpkin, Coppeke, Koppeke, Koppeken, Coppke, Koppke, Copke, Kopke, Cöpke, Köpke. "All these forms are based on one and the same name. They are inter-changed and used to identify the same person. A Coppe Dalgow is referred to at the same date of 1391 in a second document as Coppke Dalcho. Coppe Schartow in 1408 is called Koppke a year later in 1409. Koppekinus de Groben, during 1339, becomes Coppeken van der Groben in 1342, Copken in 1352, and finally Copke and Kopke in 1355. Copekin von Bredow is also called Copeko in the same document of 1335, he is Koppeke in a different document of that same day, becomes Cöpkin in 1354, Copke and Kopke in 1355, and Kopkinus in 1356; in 1427 a document refers to a Cöpke and Kopke von der Lipe...

Geographically speaking this development took place in the German north (nieder-deutscher Raum), where immigrant traders also form the Mediterranean area settled near river mouths. The first such names appeared in the regions of now Hamburg, Bremen, Stettin, Greifswald and similar locations. I would not know of any serious research results in this matter published in other than German language.

Taken from "Kleine Schriften" (small writings) Dr. R. Köpke Berlin 1872

In the translation of the Köpke name from German to English the Umlaut over the "o" is not used. Google Internet translator automatically converts it to "eo"or "Koepke" Our Australian immigrant Köpke immigrants probably had very little comprehension of the English language and depended on the interpretation of Government records officials at that time or simply dropped the Umlaut. Immigrants to other parts of the world would have had similar interpretations resulting in various spelling and pronunciation of the Köpke name. Our Köpke ancestors arrival at Port Adelaide is reported in the newspaper "South Australian Register" on 15/9/1849 as Kopike, E and wife and 3 children.

In 1814 Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated at Waterloo and countries under his control reverted to self-rule. Post Napoleon Germany evolved into opressive locally governed principalities resulting in legal and political inconsistency and economic turmoil. In 1848 after 30 years of chaos an academic lead German reunification revolution failed almost causing a civil war and enabling the socialists to take control. From 1848-1850 Germany and neighbouring Denmark were already at war and compulsory conscription for healthy men was eminent. These events, religious and economic oppression by the socialists triggered a mass immigration exodus of affluent and educated German people to various parts of the world. They were known as Forty-Eighters. Under the leadership of their Lutheran Pastor many skilled and educated Germans migrated to South Australia setting up very successful cooperative communities around Adelaide and in the Barossa Valley.

The following information was obtained from two 1850's Köpke family Bibles, May Draffin nee Kopke, Amy Kopke/Draffin nee Drife, the Ray Kopke collection, the Moira Longden collection, the author's mother Millie Drife nee Kopke and researched on the net.

Our ancestor Johann Ernst Heinrich Köpke. b c1799. d c1875. Australian naturalisation document dated 7/5/1855. States: Occupation: Licensed Victualler (Hotelier) Age 56. Born in a small village called Stäbelow in the district of Mecklenburg Western Pomerania, North Eastern Germany. Wife Maria Catherine Helena nee Osterbind.

On 14/10/1849 after a 5 month journey they arrived in Adelaide with their children, Johann Ernst Heinrich the 2nd, Amanda Margaretta Charlotte, and Ernst Ludwig Herman. Addresses from 1875 family letters suggests they had previously resided in the Altstadt (Old City) Neustadt (New City) Docklands central business district of Hamburg just North of the river Elbe. According to accounts from "Ballarat & Vacinity" E L H Köpke's naturalisation papers and the passenger manifest the family travelled on a 360 ton steamship named Ocean. Departed Hamburg 26/4/1849. The ship evaded the Danish blockade of the Hanseatic ports on the river Elbe by pretending to be the Russian ship Wolga. Captain, W. Fokkes.

Johann Ernst Heinrich dairy farmed near Adelaide, mined for gold at Forest Creek near Castlemaine, ran the Hamburg Hotel on the corner of Rundle Street and Gawler Place in Adelaide and other hotels. An 1876 letter from his daughter Amanda to E.L.H. Köpke mentions his death and a 27/3/1876 Adelaide stone masons receipt made to William Giddings on behalf of Mrs Köpke indicate he died in c1875 and was buried in or around Adelaide. Letters also mention that Mrs Köpke lived with relatives at Wismar in Germany upon her husbands passing.
Amanda married ? Smok. He died in 1869. She had returned to Hamburg and had 3 children, ??? b c1861 d 1874 from Pneumonia, Herman b c1862 and Anna b c1864.

Our ancestor Ernst Ludwig Herman Köpke AKA Louis or LH. b.11/2/1835 Hamburg Germany d. 7/11/1899 "Suffocation by drowning" Verdict at inquiry held by John Lynch 8/11/89 at Trunk Lead. George Tait Const of Poilce present at inquiry. E.L.H's mother's name on his marriage certificate is given as Anna Catherine nee Ringelke and Marie nee Osterbind on his death certificate. Translated letters from his sister Amanda Margaret Charlotte suggests his father J.E.H. Köpke remarried.
LH married: Julia Georgine Auguste Emma Schröter (Schroeter) on 16/4/1859 in Ballarat. b. 21/11/1841 Hanover Germany. Father Theodor Schröeter miner, mother Amalia nee Heilefuz??. Emma d. 23/5/1907 renal failure Brights disease Ballarat Vic. Married by Pastor Johan Peter Niquet at the Lutheran Church Ballarat. Groomsmen were E.L.Wilhelm Müller and Wilhelm Köppen.
Emma Schröter received an elaborate writing desk from her furniture making family from Germany as a wedding gift. It is now a prized possession of Daryl Kopke of Haddon.

Twelve children were born and raised at Windermere/Trunk Lead 8 km west of Ballarat on the Carngham Road.

# 1. Fredrick Albert Herman, born Windermere Vic. Jan 14th 1860. Died 8th Sept 1930. Aged 70 yrs. Perth W.A. Driller then pastoralist - established Yaringa Station, Carnarvon. Married Edith Sarah Ogboreme in 1903. Died April 3rd 1928. Aged 56 yrs.
When the gold became harder to find in Victoria Fred followed the miners to Kalgoorlie W.A.

Children: Allan Frederick Herman Kopke (pastoralist, Carbla Station - used to be called Yaringa South) born? 1907. Died 30th June 1968 aged 59 years.
Norman born 24th Dec 1907. Died DEC 17th 1975. Aged 67 years.
Beryl born? Died September 30th 1979.
Allan married Mary Henn, Children: Peter Allan Frederick and Elizabeth Mary Gooch (a nurse before marrying).
They had 3 children Elizabeth Gooch's son John (pastoralist, Manberry Station, Carnarvon) married Alison Hammond. Katherine Gooch (Goochie) died 2002. Married Andrew Watts (ex British army pilot) Norman Kopke (pastoralist, Yaringa Station, Carnarvon - used to be called Yaringa North) Married Mary Stewart, one child; Ian.
Beryl Married Les Sellinger (pastoralist, Nanga Station, Shark Bay) Children: John and Gillian. Peter (pastoralist on Carbla Station, Shark Bay) and Valmai (real estate sales representative) have 3 children - Simon Allan, Andrew Peter and Alison Elsamere.
Simon Allan Kopke is married to Carina Joy Heal. Simon (farm manager at a sheep stud in South Australia) and Carina have 3 children - Caleb James, Emily Elizabeth and Georgina Bella. Andrew Peter (an accountant) has a son called Blake.
Alison Elsamere (lawyer) single.
Ian and Georgie (died several years ago from cancer) had 3 children - Jennifer (teacher), Emma and Johnothan (could be spelt Jonothan) - all single still. John Sellinger (business man in Denham, WA) Married Mahala - their children are Tamala, Dirk, Quoin, Mead and one other - all children are single.
Gillian (has upholstering business) and Tony Templeman (Supreme Court judge) have 5 children - Katherine "Katy" (doctor), Sarah (has a business making shoes and handbags), Elizabeth, Rosemary (Rosie), John and the youngest is a girl at St. Hilda's Anglican School for Girls
Katy Templeman is Married to a doctor, her surname is now Adamson - they have 2 young children

Information supplied by 4th generation grand daughter Alison Kopke Perth WA

# 2. Catherine Julia Amelia (auntie Millie) born July 31st 1861 Windermere died Nov 19th 1894 aged 33 yrs, (Unmarried) 1 son. Adopted by a Scottish family and named Henry Reid McVitty. Her Death Certificate may be viewed here.

Karen Bamford a decedent of Henry McVitty has contacted the author. She has photographs and records carefully preserved and handed down through her mother.

# 3. Ernst Henry, (Uncle Harry) bricklayer and prospector. Worked on the construction of the Bunge flour mill, north Ballarat. 13/8/1863. Windermere, died 77ys 7/1940. Married Christina Rogerson April 1888, in Ballarat. She died 6/1955 89ys
Children:
#1 Ernst (Married, no family, divorced)
# 2 Daisy May Kopke b. 1890 Williamstown, Vic, d. 25 Oct 1962. Married.Thomas Brown b. 18 Dec 1882 Hamilton, Vic, d. 11 Jul 1953 Hamilton, Vic.Graeme Lindsay Brown. m. 1946, Horsham, Vic, Dorothy Joan Ward Ken Brown, Hamilton Vic.
#3 William (clerk) accidentally killed 19 yrs 3/1912 near St John of God Hospital in Drummond St. Ballarat by a Priest on a motor cycle.
#4 Dorothy (Hoskin) 3 boys: John, Peter, & Garry.(Hoskins Printers Ballarat)
#5 Jack Married Dulcie ------?------- 2 boys John & Peter (John & Mary Kopke children). Gabrielle & Antionette . Peter & Roslie Kopke, children: Lisa & Simon,
#6 Isabel not Married, died aged 23 yrs,
#7 Gladys Married -----?------late, no family.

 

Louis Herman Kopke with his boring plant.

# 4. Alfred Herman, (Uncle Alf) born Jan 16th 1866. Windermere Vic, bachelor. Died Dec 1 1937 aged 72 years Ballarat. Of the gentry with a yearn for fast horses and the high life. Lived on the North Side of the Carngham Road 1 klm East of the family home. (Unmarried no children)

# 5. Emma Sarah, born Jan 27th 1868. Died Sept 1896 28 years (believed to have eaten poison in cooked fruit at beach outing married Arthur Heaney (bacon curer) June 6th 1893 in Ballarat (shunned by the family, unpleasant character) 1 son Lawrence Rosoter Heaney. Raised by his grandparents and known as Ross Kopke. Returned from Gallipoli as a Lieutenant in the army. Temporarily lived with his uncle Alf and milked cows. Died June 78 WA (unmarried no children)

# 6. Louis Herman, (Uncle Herman) born Sept 25th 1869 Windermere Vic. Bachelor farmer died in the care of William & Margaret Kopke at their home July 2nd 1947 aged 77 yrs. He followed the gold miners to Kalgoorlie, had a failed romance in WA, returned and remained a batchelor. He lived in former Rogerson/Kopke family home on the hill. Herman and his brother Harry were gold prospectors obsessed with striking it rich. Their leisure time was spent drilling and mining for gold or telling tales of the big strikes. They sunk 2 shafts on Rogersons hill and actually discovered a sizeable nugget. The home was moved in 1950. (unmarried no children)

# 7. Henrietta Berthe (Lily) born Nov 19th 1871 Trunk Lead Vic. Married Hugh McKay bootmaker from Ballarat (May 15th 1895. 1 daughter, May Lilian, Married Arthur Evans (26 years) 1926. Daughter Moira married - Longden - 2 sons.

# 8. Anne Marie, born March 25th 1875 Trunk Lead, Vic. Married Joseph Lowther Duncan, lived in Adelaide. (Most probably at the Hamburg Hotel in Rundle St) "Information eagerly sought"

# 9. Catherine Ada, (Aunty Kit) born June 28th 1876. Died 11th March 1927 aged 50 years. Married Archibald McKay 3rd Aug 1904. b 2nd May 1868 d 18th May 1929. (Proprietors of wines, spirits, groceries & hardware store Cnr. Armstrong and Mair Streets Ballarat then later, McKay & McLeod Ballarat) Their homes were 103 Lyons Street, South Ballarat, and the stately Beaufort House in Alfredton west Ballarat. Injured soldiers from WW1 were accomodated at Beaufort house and repatriated by the family. Beaufort House now accommodates students from the Ballarat University.

Children 1 - Catherine Edna b 30th June 1905 d 8th Aug 1989 m Percival Spencer Moore 18th Dec 1934 b 5th March 1888 d 22nd Dec 1971.
2 - James McKay b 5th Sept 1906 d 1st June 1988 m Dorothy May Haberfield 16th Aug 1930 b 14th Oct 1905 d 1st Oct 1992.
3 - Archibald (Tig) Herman b 1908 d 1st Feb 1941 m Dorothy McIlvena d 13th Sept 1970.
Children 1a - John Percival Henry Moore b 20th July 1936 m Pamela Lois Hooker 10th April 1965 b 8th Sept 1934
1b - Jill Edna Claudia Moore b 1st May 1942 d 25th Sept 1945 (drowned)
1c Catherine Anne Moore b 3rd Dec 1946 m Brian John Fulmer 11th Dec 1965 m Ian Tinsey Nov 1991
Children 2a Archibald Max McKay b 8th Feb 1932 m Joan Kenyon 29th May 1954 b 24th April 1930
2b Patricia Watmough McKay b 21st Dec 1934 m David Gerald Fitz Gibbon 5th Nov 1960 b 1st May 1938
Children 3a - James Gordon McKay b10th Jan 1938 m June Amy Ellis 30th Nov 1963
3b - Archibald Robert McKay b 1939 m Beverley Wayth 18th March 1967
3c - Alison Edna McKay b Aug 1939 d 18th March 1940
Grandchildren Children of John Percival Henry Moore and Pamela Lois Hooker
a Peter John Moore b 17h Jan 1966 m Janelle Betty Johnson 6th May 1989
b Jennifer Lois Moore b 21st Jan 1969
c Catherine Judith Moore b 12th Oct 1972
Children of Catherine Anne Fulmer (Moore) and Brian John Fulmer
a Mark Edward Fulmer b 21st Feb 1968
b David James Fulmer b 15th Oct 1969
c Helen Jane Fulmer b 25th Oct 1971
Children of Archibald Max McKay and Joan McKay (Kenyon)
a Susan Boon (McKay) b 27th Aug 1957 m Damon Boon 26th Sept 1987
b James Anthony McKay b 27h June 1961
c Louise Claire McKay b 31st Dec 1963 d 3rd Oct 1986
Children of Patricia Watmough Fitz Gibbon ( McKay) and David Gerald Fitz Gibbon
a Andrew Edmund Fitz Gibbon b 5th Aug 1961
b Catherine Anne Fitz Gibbon b 4th Jan 1964
Children of James Gordon McKay and June Amy McKay (Ellis)
a Anthony McKay b 31st May 1966
b Georgina McKay b 23rd Jan 1968
Children of Susan Boon (McKay) and Damon Boon
a Samuel Boon b October 1987
b Joshua Boon b June 18th 1989

Information supplied by 3rd generation grand daughter Patricia Fitz Gibbon. ALBANY W.A.

# 10. Our ancestor George Wiliam, born 29th May 1878 Trunk Lead Vic, died July 17th 1952 aged 74 years, (of the gentry, hard working, astute, polite & liked a whisky in the evenings. Crushed by stacked corrugated iron) Married Margaret MayNorbrun on July 23rd 1913. Died June 9th 1966. Aged 78 yrs.
Children: Pauline May born June 9th 1914. Died ? William Herman. Born August 23rd 1916. Died 5th March 1981. Roy born Dec 27th 1917. Died 28th June 1954. Leonard, born May 6th 1919. Died 7th December 1958. Emma Amelia (Millie) b June 18th 1925

May Married Lez Draffin, 2 children: David …October 1948. Married Judith Theege and Margaret (May 8th 1952). Married Russell McKay. 18th March 1972.

William Married Amy Heatherbell Henderson-Drife. April 29th 1950. 4 children, Daryl William, Jan 28th 1951, Heather Amelia. Feb 27th 1953. Marilyn Dulciebelle. Dec 31st 1955 Beryl Deborah. Oct 7th 1957. Heather & Neville Blair. Married 18thNov 1972 Daryl Married Kay Gardner 1st March 1975. 2 girls & 1 boy. Marilyn Married Tom Hucker. Feb 14th 1976. Beryl Married Neil McColl. 29th April 1978.

Roy died June 26th 1954. from an mystery illness after returning from fruit picking.

Leonard, Bachelor, (Millie's favorite brother) Died Dec 7th 1958. Had curvature of the spine (no children)

Our ancestor Emma Amelia (Millie) married George Henry Henderson-Drife. Children: Lindsay George. 27/6/1952. & John William. 1/7/1955.
Lindsay Married Janet Lilian Paton, Jan 11th 1975. 1 son, Chester Grant born October 28th 1978 (Lindsay's other children are Michelle Lisa born 16/5/1971 & Rychelle Anne born 9/11/1990)
John Married Billie Robinson. 17/9/1974. Children are Belinda Jane, Thomas John & Ian James.

William George Kopke and Margaret May Norbrun

The marriage of George Henry Henderson-Drife to Emma Amelia (Millie) Kopke.

# 11. Adelaide May (Aunty Daisy) born August 17th 1880. Married Adam Wilson. They were motor garage operators and ran the Chrysler car franchise in Lydiard St. Near Mair St. Next to the Regent theatre in Ballarat. Adam had a stroke in the 1930's Adelaide Kopke was known as "the Mater" to the whole family and passed away in the 1960's. .
Children;
1. Adam Louden (Peter) d 1960's married Irene Anderson d ? : 3 daughters; Christine May, Susan Mary and Rosemary Ann
2. Alexander Clarence (Tammy) d 1960's married Mary Wastell. 3 children; Bryan, Stephanie, Peter
3. John Gillison 1922-1994 married Glenis Gullan b.1924. d Jan 2006. 4 children; Janine Margaret, Ross McLaren, Susan Elizabeth and Priscilla Jane
Peter was an engineer, Tammy was an accountant and John was a mining engineer. Tammy and John both went to WWII as engineers.

Next generation
1. Christine May married Alan John Newton; Susan Mary married Richard Westhorpe; Rosemary Ann married Hugh Pitts.
2. Bryan married Denise McInerney (child Fiona Elizabeth); Stephanie and Peter
3. Janine Margaret married Neville Robert Scott; 2 children- Simon James (b. 1974) and Caitlin Louise (B. 1977) (reside in Sydney)
4. Ross McLaren Wilson married Heather Archibald; 4 children - Gemma Louise (b. 1980), James MacLaren (b. 1982), Andrew John (b.1984) and Edward (b. 1986) (reside Sydney)
Susan Elizabeth married Ian Douglas Mason and had 3 children (reside Red Hill, VIC) - Justin Mark b. 1975 reside Brisbane Benjamin John b. 1976 resides UK. Matthew James b. 1978 resides Sydney.
Priscilla Jane married David Stott and had 3 children; Christopher David b. 1980. Peter Mark b. 1983. Jonathon b. 1985 resides Sydney.
The four families and 12 grand children of John and Glenis Wilson remain close.

Next generation
1. Simon James Scott married Nicole Worth and had 2 children; Jessica Lauren (b. 2001) and Jack Robert (b. 2005) 2. Justin Mark Mason married Jodie (?surname) and have 2 children; Samuel (b. 2002) and Ruby (b. 2004)

John Wilson spent school holidays working with the sheep on Uncle Herman's farm at Windermere. John Wilson's cousin, Ross also worked on this farm and they were close. John's first son was named Ross after his cousin. Glenis remembered Herman as a wonderful Uncle to John Wilson.
Mary and Tammy lived in the family home in Raglan St. 2 doors from Sturt St. with Adelaide Wilson (nee Kopke) They continued living there after she passed away. Glenis remembers a beautiful big painting over the fireplace in the family home.

Information supplied by Caitlin Scott - Sydney

# 12. Hermine Louise, (Aunty Mirna) born August 4th 1883. Trunk Lead. On 29/6/1923 at 39yo she married 49yo (widowed 1/9/1920 commercial traveller) John Saunders at the Registry office in Ballarat. He was born in Kew, mother Ann Lewis. No further family. They may have moved to WA. (Information Sought).


 

A gathering outside the hotel at Trunk Lead c1890. Emma and Louis are seated in the centre.(larger version available here)

In 1859 Louis Herman Kopke married, took an oath of allegiance and was naturalised as an Australian affording him land ownership rights. Substantial wealth gained from gold mining success enabled him to purchase 130 acres of land on the Carghnam Road at Windermere and take up farming whilst residing in Ballarat and working at Canadian Gully. He was well educated and of the gentry.
In 1871 the Trunk Lead mine commenced operations and LH built the Ballarat & Grenville Hotel on his land beside the track to the mine off the Carghnam Road.
LH was active in community affairs, a member of the Grenville Shire Council and the prestigious Old Colonists' Association.
His wife Emma and her daughters worked hard running the hotel, providing accomodation, meals, and refreshment for the mine staff, visitors and passing trade.
From 1871 to 1885 the Trunk Lead mine with its tent city shantytown 300 mtrs South of Kopke's Hotel was a lucrative source of income providing the large family with a comfortable life style. L.H. conducted horse races on a property purchased from Walkers just west of the Trunk Lead/Kopke train station, hosted the Ballarat hunt club and other socially popular events enhancing his Hotel's profile. According to William George L.H's youngest son there was another Hotel 75m to the West. Fierce and hostile rivalry for business existed between the establishments. At the height of the mines boom times LH owned a substancial amount of neighbouring land.
Then the Cardigan drive gold bearing reef of the mine was lost at a land fault, the Haddon drive was flooding and all the easy gold was won. The mine was then leased to Chinese tributers but was eventually overcome by water. In 1885 the mine ceased operations, the shaft was sealed and the equipment taken elsewhere. The mines closure, the tragic deaths of his cherished elder daughters, Millie in 1894 and Emma 1896 and the economic depression of the late 1800's took their toll on Louis Herman Kopke's wealth and health. In 1899 L.H. and 1907 Emma passed away. Their diminished assets were dispersed amongst the 12 children.
William George the youngest son and wife Margaret May inherited the hotel and closed it around 1915. About 1930 they demolished the building and built a family home on the site. Millie recalls being chastised for throwing sand into the remnants of the Hotels cellar by her (brick layer) uncle Harry when he was laying footings for the new home. The cellar was at the front on the left of the picture. William and Margaret were astute very hard working business people and ran a successful dairy/mixed farm acquiring adjoining neighbouring properties and expanding their land holdings from their inherited 80 acres with the Hotel to over 1,000 acres. They continued to run the Trunk Lead post office and collected a load toll for the Country Roads Board for quartz rock carted from the mines tailings until the1960's.

The author recalls the home in the1950's. On the right hand side at the rear there was a large kitchen with a big cast iron wood stove that had a firebox in the middle and an oven on either side. There was a big table and a lead light dresser for the cutlery and crockery. Perishables were kept in a coolgardie safe and food and the dishes were dealt with on the table. There was no running water or sink inside the home. Water was brought in from one of the tanks outside. Electricity didn't arrive until the 1960's and lighting was supplied by a pressurised kerosene Aladin's lantern. A battery operated valve radio provided entertainment. The next room towards the front on the right was a small sitting room with a Victorian cast iron fireplace. A bedroom was at the very front. There was a hall way down the middle. The lounge with a piano, fireplace and all the families' fines was on the left at the front. Behind it were other bedrooms and a wash room with a stand, basin and water jug.

Annexed to the back door via a porch was another building that housed the dairy, bathroom and laundry. Behind these were the car garages, cesspit toilet and storage bunkroom. 30mtrs further back was a milking shed. Most of the ageing outbuildings were demolished and the house was extensively renovated in the mid 1970's.
About 20m to the West of the house is the road to the mine. On the other side was the buggy shed. A comprehensive blacksmith's shop with a forge, the stables and chaff house. The cobblestone-floored stables and chaff house still remain from the 19th century. A handsome family buggy is on display at the Sovereign Hill tourist attraction in Ballarat.

c1950. Kopke's Dodge outside home # 2 Originally the site of ELH & JGAE Kopke's Ballarat and Grenville Hotel.
Since the 1860's four Kopke generations have resided here.

The L.H. Kopke family tomb with a tall red granite stone and numerous graves are just north of a cedar tree near the path 200 m north of the front gate in the church of England section of the Norman St. Ballarat cemetery.

Kopke Family Deaths, Births and Marriages records: (research incomplete)

File No. Name Event Father Mother Spouse Year District
26928/1880 Louis Herman Birth Johan Ernst Henry Catherine - 1880 Wentworth, NSW
24353/1878 Maude A Birth Johan Ernst Henry Catherine - 1878 Wentworth, NSW
7352/1887 Alfred Clark Marriage - - Catherine Kopke 1887 Wentworth NSW
28770/1882 Frederick William Birth Johan Ernst Henry Catherine - 1882 Wentworth, NSW
14113/1886 Johan Ernst Henry Birth Johan Ernst Henry Catherine - 1886 Wentworth, NSW
4186/1894 Frederick Kopke Marriage - - Catherine E. Green 1894 Hillston, NSW
3225/1920 Arthur Kopke Marriage - - Evelyn Andrew 1920 St. Leonards, NSW
1903858 Catherine Ada Birth Louis Herman Emma - 1861 Ballarat, VIC
12493 Amelia Kopke Death Louis Herman - - 1894 Carlton, VIC
8672 Daisy May Birth Henry Ernest Christina Rogerson - 1890 Williamstown, VIC
1881 Emma Marriage - - Arthur Heaney 1893 Burr Head, VIC
3217 Henry Ernest Marriage - - Christina Rogerson 1888 Windermere, VIC
34358 Henry Ernest Birth Henry Ernest Chirstina - 1888 Williamstown, VIC
26044 Hermine Louise Birth Louis Herman Julia Schroeter - 1883 Sago, VIC
2845 Lily Marriage - - Hugh McKay 1895 Trunk Lead, VIC
13972 Louis Herman Death Enrst - - 1899 Haddon, VIC
37550 William Herman Birth Henry Ernest Christina - 1892 Williamstown, VIC

The above records are taken from Maxi.com Historical Search, NSW Registry of births deaths and marriages, and Family Search.com.

Title event Series No. Control symbol contents date range access status Location Bar-code
Kopke, Marga Arrival BP25/1 KOPKE M 1957-58 open Brisbane 4387841
Kopke, Friedrich Helmuth Daniel Naturalization A711 2119 1884-1886 open Adelaide 3182306
Fitzpatrick - Browne, James Walter; wife Gladys Edna (nee Kopke) - J25 1972/6980 1964-1977 un examined Brisbane 6690857
Kopke, Marga - J25 1956/13505 1956 un examined Brisbane 1645386
Hansen, Hienrich; Dora (nee Kopke) - A12514 HANSEN H 1964 un examined Canberra 7151857
Kopke, Rolf; Elvira (nee Rampf) - A2478 KOPKE R 1954 un examined Canberra 7792040
Kopke, Carl - MP16/1 1915/3/138 1915-1991 open Melbourne 329300
Bernt Kopke; Louise Kopke application for addmission PP6/1 1949/H/5474 1949 un examined Perth 4310864
Adolf Kopke criminal case (manslaughter) G255 1114 1911 open Canberra 1039076
Kopke, Gladys Edna service record B884 VF397412 1939-1948 un examined Canberra 6262040
Kopke, Ernest service record B883 VX87581 1939-1948 un examined Canberra 6061665
Kopke, Harald Hans - A2478 KOPKE HHF 1960 un examined Canberra 7705823
A Kopke criminal case (assault) G255 1121 1911 open Canberra 1039100
Kopke, Frieda Johanna Elisabeth naturalization A1 1921/4299 1916-1921 open Canberra 39729
Kopke, H, Nelly - A2478 KOPKE H BOX 31 1953 open Canberra 1450474
Kopke, Louis Herman Naturalization A712 1860/N1102 1860 open Canberra 1813324
Kopke, Louis Herman (see also 60/N1102) Naturalization A712 1859/M10626 1859 open Canberra 1813081
Kopke, Alfred - A2478 KOPKE A 1962 un examined Canberra 7690779

Taken from naa12.naa.gov.au

Millie's Granny Mary Anne Norbrun's (nee Keogh) husband Charlie died from silicosis "miners complaint" Her home in Haddon was sold to Bob Taylor. Norbrun's originally came from Bath England.

Their family grave is against the fence three quarters along the Creswick Rd. side of the Ballarat old cemetery and contains the remains of:


Charles Norbrun 1828-1887.(death certificate)

Charles Norbrun 1858-1913. (death certificate)

Marie Norbrun 1898-1928,

Sarah E Penney 1881-1957 nee Norbrun lived at Lorne. Married Cecil Penney.

Mary A Norbrun 1860 - 1957

Mary Ann Norbrun, Emma Amellia Kopke's Grandmother.

Millie walked 3 klm to the Bunkers Hill primary school until the 8th grade attaining her merit certificate in 1938 and studied piano in Ballarat to grade 3. She nearly succumb to what was thought to be Scarlet Fever as a small child. Millie attended the Bunkers Hill Methodist church and Sunday School. The school was suspiciously destroyed by fire in the 1940's. The church was relocated. Bunkers hill is on the Carngham Road half way between the Kopke home and Ballarat. Bunkers Hill and neighboring Sago Hill were densely populated mining villages in the late 1800's. Before the road cutting was deepened and widened in the 1970's there was an ornamental drinking fountain fed by a fresh water spring at the top of Bunkers Hill. Nothing from the 1800s remains. In the late 1980's George and Millie subdivided and sold a farm they had earlier purchased from the estate of George Stride at Sago. George Stride was a respected community lynch pin, batchelor, chicken farmer and Post Master. Bunkers Hill and Sago has since become a settlement of farmlets with a scenic elevated view across Kopke's valley to the West. Kopke's hand milked up to 30 Ayrshire cows, separated the milk from the cream and made butter. As a small child the author remembers beating the summer heat slumbering in their lovely cool partially underground dairy which was covered in a grape vine. Kopke's raised geese chickens, sheep, horses, pigs, cattle and all farm animals. They had a large vegetable garden and orchard and preserverd what they grew and made honey. Water was drawn from a well until a bore was sunk and a wind mill erected in the 1940's. Carriers took their produce to the Ballarat markets weekly and delivered supplies to the farm. Hawkers and Peddlers called with their wares. Farm duties commenced at sun up and continued after sun down seven days a week. Horses were used to haul farm implements and for transport. They required stabling, their feet tending, brushing and were fed chaff in the evenings.The kopke's had a very handsome buggy which was donated to and is on display at Soverign Hill Ballarat. A Dodge tourer car was purchased in the 1940's. Sheef oaten hay was cut with a binder, stooked and stacked by hand. Some hay was cut into chaff for the cows and horses. The remainder had the grain removed by a thrashing machine powered by a steam traction engine behind the stables and chaff shed. A large quantity of wood sawn by hand with a cross cut saw was provided for the steam engine and meals and accommodation had to be provided for over 20 swagmen who traveled with and operated the thrasher. After marring George Henderson-Drife Millie lived at Tourello and volunteered her services to the primary school Mothers Club and The Junior Red Cross for over 50 years. The new Tourello School and teachers residence has since been relocated. The old school which was used as the local hall was destroyed when a tornado blew a large tree onto it in February 1984. The derelict remains of the tennis court a shelter shed and toilet block are all that is left.

The Trunk Lead Kopke family property is now proudly owned by Daryl and Kay Kopke and the Henderson-Drife family. Daryl raises lambs and grows hay. Kay is a retired schoolteacher. In keeping with the families tradition they are highly regarded and take a very active roll as leaders in community affairs.

The Kopke Photo Archives
Kopke family graves
Death Certificates
Emma Sarah Kopke
Ray Kopke
Trunk Lead Mine
The story of Ernst Ludwig Herman Kopke's first years in Australia (as related in Ballarat and vicinity)
The Hamburg Hotel
Maps of locations mentioned in the text
Article on the Danish German war of 1848 (outside page)